Break the barrier: If ‘Age is just a number’, will you stop stereotyping the same, dear Bollywood? | Bollywood Bubble

Break the barrier: If ‘Age is just a number’, will you stop stereotyping the same, dear Bollywood?

Break the barrier: If ‘Age is just a number’, will you stop stereotyping the same, dear Bollywood?

Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara, Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani

22 tak padhai, 25 pe naukri, 26 pe chokri, 30 pe bachhe, 60 pe retirement, aur phir… maut ka intezaar… Dhat, aisi ghisi-piti life thodi jeena chahta hun main

Well, the character of Ranbir Kapoor aka Bunny in ‘Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani’ surely said something to ponder about, but no matter how much we loved the movie, it in itself failed to break the stereotype that this dialogue spoke of. We see the characters of Bunny, Naina, Adi and Avi reckless and carefree in the student years of their lives, close to somewhere around 18-20. Post eight years, when they are close to 26-28, we see Aditi getting married, and Aditya as someone who has given up in life and chose to revel his sorrows in drinking because he is tired of trying. On the other hand, we have a successful doctor Naina, and Bunny as a nomad travel journalist and photographer with huge money bags.

This gets you thinking. Firstly, who gives up at the age of 26? Don’t people have the right to feel critical about their career choices at that age? Aditya’s phase of building a great path ahead of him has just started, so just because he could not carve a path before the stereotypical age, is he just supposed wallow in self-pity and liquor about it? Well, we don’t think so. Secondly, another stereotype was the wedding of Aditi. While we agree that it was critical to the plot and quite convenient too, to bring together estranged friends at the wedding of best friend, the stereotype of ’26 pe chokri’ plays a strong part here. Naina and Bunny too are shown leading successful careers and a plush life at an age when most of us are confused as to whether we have even taken up the career that we want to pursue in future? After all, in real life not everybody gets a chance or freedom to dive headlong into unconventional paths.

There is another example. Before ‘Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani’, there was ‘Zindagi Naa Milegi Dobara’, another movie which we all loved, but there too, the age stereotype was stark. In one of the sequences, we get to know that the leads, Kabir, Imran and Arjun are ten years past their college, and into their lives. But by then, one of them is already getting married, and the other one is raking in millions, all by the age of somewhere in late twenties. However, we were more than happy when Kabir divulged his fear in the end that he was not ready to get married. It was a much needed breaking of a stereotype that just because it was his ‘age’ to get married, he should.

Though Bollywood actors are living examples of successful youngsters living on their own terms, and shunning the societal pressures by not giving in, somehow, the same lacks in movies. How many times have we been shown protagonists who are in their thirties, unmarried, successful and living life as it comes? Rarely, because our protagonists are young and fresh, mostly in their early twenties. Even if they make a mistake, it is shown that they have ample time to redeem the same, well within the societal alarm clock of expiry.

We ask, why? When we can have a Deepika Padukone and Priyanka Chopra conquering the world in their early thirties, looking better than most of the twenty-year-olds, why can’t we have such protagonists? There are many Bollywood stars who were at the low phase of their careers with success and applaud coming in only when they touched the third decade of their lives. Shah Rukh Khan, the superstar, is the biggest example. Though he was slowly gaining popularity, but his key phase came in his thirties.

So Bollywood, when you have such real life role models to prove that success and emotions are not age sensitive, why portray the same in your movies? Why make plots that fit into the strata of society? Why not experiment with age which is just a number? Why can’t a person in thirties be a protagonist not suffering from some sort of crisis of societal pressure, and be happy and normal instead? And if there is a pressure, why can’t that be the one which is suffered by a normal human being, and not someone torturing one for hormonal crisis?

A brilliant example of the same can be the legendary sitcom ‘F.R.I.E.N.D.S’, which came in the nineties and showcased the lives of six individuals who were just ‘normal’. There was no societal pressure on them for marriage or career, no pressure to get something done within an age bracket, and slowly, they evolved in both personal and professional lives. We agree that it was a sitcom and not a movie, but then, the same imperfect characters can be shown in the movies too. A confused 29-year-old is not an alien, after all, and definitely not someone who cannot try for the age of trying is past, or even someone to be pitied for not being ‘settled’.

We want to see such stories and we want to see such characters. We want to see them evolve, but not be confined in a norm of stereotypes. Break the barrier of age Bollywood, let your characters make mistakes and not rush to redeem it in the duration of the movie. Let the plots and characters be imperfect, if that is what society deems them to be. You are the mirror of the society, and maybe one day, what you show as normal will be deemed normal in society, and not just the other way round.

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STOP judging the misery of Bollywood stars. They're as humane as we are

Imagine a situation when you wake up one fine morning, have your cuppa of coffee and then grab up a newspaper in your hand, only to see a BREAKING scandal on the first page which is all about YOU. What would be your reaction? You’ll be shocked and paranoid, right?

The same goes for our Bollywood celebrities too.

They are famous, and we think that they are over-privileged, and so, we rob them of all the humanity we pride ourselves upon. We forget that Bollywood celebrities might also get the same feeling of helplessness when they are pulled into a puddle without any reason; for those just for the sake news. The point we want to prove here is that, we literally rely on the lives of our Bollywood celebrities; what they eat? where are they vacationing/partying? she was so fake during that interview?, and we so love it.

Image Source - Yogen Shah

But on a franker note, do we really know when to not cross the line? Let’s talk about a recent example, that of megastar Amitabh Bachchan. When many media houses reported (not us) that Senior Bachchan had been admitted to Lilavati Hospital, Mumbai; but the truth was something else. The star had actually visited the hospital for a routine check-up as he was complaining about a pain in his lumbar. Later, Big B penned down a poem in Hindi which explained that while he totally understands the photographers’ need for his pictures to continue their work and it is just part of their profession, those camera flashes may act hazardous at times, especially to the eyes, which is why he hid his face with a hat. PERIOD! Have a look at his heartfelt poem below:

Image Source - http://srbachchan.tumblr.com/

That’s just one of the example, when a problem of a star was not at all sympathised, but was churned into a BREAKING news.

Image Source - Times Now

Even actress Preity Zinta recently became the catch for many media portals when the dimpled beauty was snapped exiting a hang-out spot in Mumbai wearing a ill-fitted dress. And then what, there were speculations that Is Preity Zinta pregnant and is that a Baby bump she is flashing? Like really peeps, now a actress can’t even wear a loose clothing piece, does everything needs to be oh-so gossip tuned?

Image Source - Pinterest

When Deepika Padukone talked about her depression story, without a doubt there were fans who sympathised the lady. But over time, there were also many who pointed out the credibility of her confession. Questions were raised and statements were thrown at her which in a gist meant that being a lady who enjoyed so much fame and money, how could she claim of suffering from depression. Clearly, such people just proved their ignorance of the fact that Depression is not just a verb, but actually a mental illness which can claim anyone, irrespective of status, wealth, talent and beauty.

How fickle and heartless we are as audience. We claim to be head over heels in love with our stars and yet when it comes to such times and things, we leave no chance to take a jibe at them.

Few months back Aishwarya Rai Bachchan paid the price of being a celebrity, when paparazzi zoomed and clicked some tacky snaps of the star when she had visited Manish Malhotra‘s residence for dinner, along with her hubby. But instead of being supportive and taking Aish’s side, social media took pleasure out of those GROSS photos. We wouldn’t have reacted the same way if it would have happened with someone close to us, right?

Image Source - Instagram (@aslisona)

Yesterday, a media portal bashed Sonakshi Sinha with her choice of ensembles which she wore during her film’s promotion. While we do get that everything cannot be sugar-coated, but we do need to be subtle in the way that even celebs as humans get what we are trying to say.

Forget sympathy, where is the empathy?

Are we affirming the fact that celebrities are rich and so their misery is not at all real? Why can’t we gulp the fact that the problems of our stars are also genuine? Their misery, no matter how public, are real, even in the cut-throat ugly world of glamour. Agreed that they are rich, move in their swanky cars and do what not; but at last they are HUMANS just like you and me.

Lastly, not all celebrities are publicity obsessed. And we should surely learn where to draw a line. TIME OUT!

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Dear Priyanka, it’s high time you starred in a Bollywood Film…

Dear Priyanka,

January 25, 2018, I went to a theatre to watch Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s ‘Padmaavat’. It was a first day, first show. I was keen to see what the director had to offer, after ‘Bajirao Mastani’.

Well, I was quite impressed with ‘Padmaavat’ thanks to the spectacular vision of SLB. Even the actors left a mark. While Ranveer Singh’s Khilji act was outstanding, Deepika Padukone looked stunning as Rani Padmavati and Shahid Kapoor as Maharawal Ratan Singh impressed us. However, I felt there was something missing in the film, an ‘X – Factor’ that was there in ‘Bajirao Mastani’, but not in ‘Padmaavat’. I couldn’t put things together as what was that one thing missing in ‘Padmaavat’.

Image Source - Instagram @deepikapadukone

Finally, after wracking my brains and heart for a few days, a box office comparison article on ‘Padmaavat’ VS ‘Bajirao Mastani’ finally gave me the answer I was looking for. It was you, Priyanka Chopra. The ‘X-factor’ in ‘Bajirao Mastani’ was missing from the magnum opus and now a Rs 250 crore plus profitable film ‘Padmaavat’. The subtle yet a powerful performance that you gave in ‘Bajirao Mastani’.

Image Source - Pinterest

I then literally went and checked out other dialogue promos of ‘Bajirao Mastani’ that featured you, and understood that not just ‘Padmaavat’, an ‘X – Factor’ from Bollywood has been missing. Bollywood is missing Priyanka Chopra, who is not just a pretty face, but a performer who can make us sit back and notice her.

Your last Bollywood movie was a 2016 release ‘Jai Gangaajal’. Though you were excellent in the film, your ‘Bajirao Mastani’ performance overpowers every other last release of yours.

Image Source - Instagram @priyankachopra

There’s no doubt that Priyanka, you are making India proud internationally with the ‘Quantico’ series and three Hollywood films in your kitty, but Bollywood needs you too. Its been more than two years, that your fans are waiting for you to announce your next Bollywood film. We have heard a lot about the films you might take up, SLB’s ‘Gustakhiyan’, Kalpana Chawla biopic, Rakesh Sharma biopic and ‘Fanney Khan’. However, till date, none have been announced as your next Bollywood project.

Image Source - Pinterest

Priyanka, it’s definitely high time that you come back to Bollywood, not just for your fans but for Bollywood. I am not saying that Bollywood can’t work without Priyanka and movies won’t be made. But, then the silver screen is missing a performer like you.

After all, as your songs goes, “Dekhi lakh lakh pardesi girl, Ain’t nobody like my DESI GIRL.”

Sincerely,
A guy who misses you on big screen

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